Discussion 4: Understanding of indicators of abuse Discussion 4: Understanding of indicators of abuse This is an unfortunate reality of nursing. As mandated rep

Discussion 4: Understanding of indicators of abuse

Discussion 4: Understanding of indicators of abuse

This is an unfortunate reality of nursing. As mandated reporters, it is important to have an understanding of indicators of abuse and to report your findings. In the case of child abuse, you may see physical indicators such as cigarette burns or unexplained welts on their torso. You may see behavioral signs such inappropriate apprehension or reports of them being withdrawn or aggressive. If sexual abuse is occurring, you may find the child is constantly complaining of being fatigued or is falling asleep at school because the abuse is happening at bedtime and so they try and stay awake and be on guard. Abuse can also be emotional which can lead a child to demonstrate low self-esteem and again sometimes withdraw (American SPCC, 2018).

Our facility’s protocol for reporting these incidents were to do a full assessment and then call our child abuse liaison to come and speak with the family. Some of these cases are obvious and some are more subtle. I once had a case where a mother tried to kill herself in front of her four year old and she could not understand why I was calling child protective services to come and take her child. She thought that could only happen if she physically did something to her child. I explained to her that emotional abuse is another form of child abuse and can be psychologically scarring to her child.


Indicators of Child Abuse | American SPCC (2018). Retrieved from https://americanspcc.org/indicators-child-abuse/

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